Saturday, January 23, 2010

All Some Politics Is Local National

. Saturday, January 23, 2010

I don't get this:

A nice tidbit from the Washington Post/KFF/Harvard poll of MA special election voters (pdf):

As you may know, Massachusetts has a law that is aimed at assuring that virtually all Massachusetts residents have health insurance. Given what you know about it, in general, do you support or oppose the Massachusetts Universal Health Insurance Law?


Among Brown voters, 51% support this law and 44% oppose it.


What's the point? Brown's opponent had an identical view on the issue, and he wasn't running for MA Senate; he was running for US Senate. A state program on which they agreed wasn't what separated them in a race for a national seat.

What separated them was that Brown pledged to oppose national universal health care plans while Coakley pledged to support them. It's a pretty safe assumption that all of the 44% opposed to the MA plan would also be opposed to a similar national plan, and that some of the 51% who support a MA might also be opposed to a similar national plan (if, e.g., they are concerned about rising national deficits, or an increased tax burden on a relatively affluent state, or any number of other concerns). All he needed was 3 of those 51% to swing the election to his side. It's not at all surprising to me that he was able to find them.

Given that, it's no surprise that big chunk of Brown's voters would disagree with his views on a local issue over which he has no discretion, but support him on a national issue in which immediately becomes a pivotal vote.

DeLong linked to this as if it meant something. So... does it mean something? I can't see how. What am I missing?

UPDATE: Brown's voters were overwhelmingly against a national health care reform plan.

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<strike>All</strike> Some Politics Is <strike>Local</strike> National
 
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